Things to do in Chania, Crete

Chania is regarded to be among the most stunning towns in Crete. The town can be found off the north coast in western Crete, it features cobbled streets which are filled with boho-chic boutiques that sell clothes, local artworks, and ceramics. The town is a favorite destination for tourist holidaying in Greece during August. Chania has a wonderful history as it has been inhabited since the Bronze age.

Explore the Old Harbor

The old harbor plays important role in the history of the city and it is the main attraction of the town. The harbor is filled with wooden fishing boats and lots of seafood restaurant and cafes which brims with tourist in the summer. You can also explore the east side of the harbor where you will get to see a mosque that was built by the Ottoman Turks when they conquered Chania in 1645. The highlight of the old harbor is the lighthouse which was designed by an Egyptian architect in 1839.

Visit the Archaeological Museum

Chania has a wonderful history and it is also the place where the Minoans founded the ancient city of Kydonia. The archaeological museum of Chania can be found in the Gothic Church of San Francesco. The church features a light and airy vaulted space where you will get to see archaeological finds from the western Crete that dates back to the Neolithic times from the Roman era. Some of the exhibits that you will see here are Minoan ceramics, gold jewelry, painted burial urns, and clay tablets with inscriptions. The highlight of the exhibits is votive ceramic bulls, mesmerizing marble bust of Roman Emperor Hadrian.

Go sightseeing at Maritime Museum of Crete

This is a magnificent museum where you will get to see exhibits from the Minoans era through the Byzantine, Venetian, and the Turkish period till World War II. The exhibits in this museum cover two floors and you will get to see collections like amazing models of ships, video presentations, photos, paintings, and nautical equipment. This museum is located at the western corner of the old harbor and was formerly used as a prison. You should ensure you do not miss this museum if you are a history lover.

Go on a day trip to Monasteries of Akrotiri Peninsula

This rocky peninsula of Akrotiri is 10km east of Chania and it homes three monasteries. This monastery is a perfect day trip destination and it homes three monasteries. Agia Triada is located in a meticulously tended olive groves and orange orchards with a cloistered courtyard and lovely church in the center. The monastery was founded in 1612 and you can buy olive oil from the monks here. There is also the monastery known as Gouverneto which looks like a fortress, the monastery offers mesmerizing views. From here you can then go to Katholiko which is an abandoned sixth-century monastery that built on the cliff. The highlight of the day trip to these monasteries is the Stavros bay which is a sandy beach and suitable for swimming.

Have a relaxing time at Elafonissi

This mesmerizing beach can be found about 2 hours’ drive from Chania. You will be amazed by the colors here as the sand takes on pink hues from the tiny pieces of shells and coral while the sea is turquoise blue. This is a perfect beach to take Instagram worthy pictures. The highlight of the beach is that you can wade through the ankle-deep water to an islet, the islet is a conservation area as it is the last stop of birds that migrate from Europe to Africa. The beach is a fantastic place to visit and it is ideal for families because of its warm and shallow sea. The beach also features sunbeds and umbrellas that you can hire plus canteen to try out some snacks.

Visit the Botanic Park & Gardens of Crete

The botanical park of Crete is located at the foot of the White mountains and it is filled with exotic flowers and fruit trees from all over the world and is labelled for easy identification. This is a perfect spot for you if you a nature lover, the best part is that there are numerous shady spots with benches that you can sit and relax. The botanic park features a café-restaurant which serves traditional Cretan dishes that is prepared from the park’s products.

Shop at the Chania Municipal Market

One of the top things to do in Chania is to visit the municipal market if you are the type that loves food markets. The market feature more than 75 shops that sell food, meat, goods, and souvenirs that you can take home to your loved ones.

Explore Firka Fortress

This is a 17th-century fortress and it is also known as the Revellino del Porto. Firka fortress is a Venetian fortification located on the northwestern side of the port and it served as the headquarters for military leaders. The fortress features sturdy walls which were built with six arched cannon openings for protecting the harbor.